Beer Profile: Saranac Irish Red Ale

Profiled by Ken Carman

Upon popping a top I usually sniff straight from the

Picture courtesy lenndevours.com
bottle. It can focus the aroma as the scent floats up the narrow neck. Smelled pretty clean, though there may be just a tad diacetyl. Not unexpected in the style. Just a little vague hop aroma. None I could sense in the taste.

Just a bit more of an Amber than Red, but close enough. Clarity good with garnet highlights. Head good, but fades fast… then lingers on the edges. Small glass may have caused some of that.

Mouthfeel: caramel/crystal malt very dominate. Slight sharp carbonation sense there, but not heavily carbonated: a background sense to the mouthfeel. Slightly more malt complex than many Irish Reds I’ve had.

There really is almost no hop sense to the taste. The aroma may be a bit malt sweet, but close to not quite as malt sweet to the taste as the style calls for. But tis pleasant and I would say still in style. Just borderline dry for the style. The strong malt backbone. for the style, seems quite at home in my mouth and equally happy passing on to its next destination as I swallow. Just a tad “chewy” and a bit like pure liquid, dextrin-ous, roasted barley. Just a bit bread like, like the more dense whole grain bread you get at a health food store.

An excellent entry for Saranac/Matt Brewing. I believe it’s just a seasonal. Would make a great regular offering. And they haven’t entered it anywhere I would suggest they do. It probably will win at least an award. Maybe two. Maybe more.

Here are the stats from the Saranac site…

Beer Style: Irish Red Ale
Malt Selections: 2 Row, Crystal
Hop Selections: Vanguard
Color: Deep Garnet
Mouthfeel / Body: Medium Body, Balanced Sweetness
Food Companions: Light Fare
Alcohol By Volume: 4.5%
Original Gravity: 11.0